As I See it on the Land – October 2021

Harvest eventually finished. The wheat at Woodchurch came off similar to the rest of the farm. Light in bushel weight but with good bread making quality. We hear that nationally the bakers are struggling to get good samples of wheat, so we hope ours will still be accepted.

The combine coped with the beans and did a good job of salvaging what looked like a mess. The tonnage appears to be close to two tonnes an acre, which if that proves correct is good for the year. When the sun shone once we got into September, the combine was able to swiftly harvest nearly a hundred acres of linseed in less than two days. What a relief. Heat is required to allow the wirery stems of the plant to pass through the combine without wrapping around every obstacle it can find to attach its ‘self to. The yield according to the combine, which we do not how accurate it is, was close to a tonne an acre, which probably made it our best crop this year.

The over winter wheat stubbles have all been sown with a green cover crop, but now the weather has changed back to dry it has not germinated. Possible thunderstorms are forecast for tonight.

The oilseed rape crop for 2022 was direct drilled into wheat stubbles just over a week ago and already two half doses of slug pellets have been applied across the fields to try to stem the army of slugs attacking the seedlings. You do not get a second chance with this crop. Once the seedling is eaten that’s it.

Mark has tried mole ploughing, but the bean haulm clogs the beam. The linseed stubble is too dry to let the moleplough enter into the ground. Only the oilseed rape stubble and some of the wheat stubbles are getting done.

I was a little disappointed by the quality of the owl in black and white print last month. It didn’t give justice to the cameraman.

The swallows departed this week along with hundreds of others that had accumulated over Romney Marsh before leaving on their journey. I do hope they return next year. But now it will save some work not having to clean windows on the holiday let. They nested on the rainwater downpipe. As they flew into the nest, they had a habit of dropping crap all over the windows.

Peter Sillibourne